Record-breaking hoop tour makes stop at Stearns

Published 4:47 pm Friday, April 16, 2010

Globetrotters they are not. But Richard Paff, John Baker, and Jack Davis are taking their hoops show on the road in a record-breaking tour of the contiguous United States, hoping to shoot a basket in all 48 in just nine days.
Two of their stops were right here in the Foothills area today. They&bsp;visited Landrum at 9 a.m. to record their hoop in South Carolina, followed by a trip to Stearns Gym in Columbus at 9:20 a.m. to record a hoop in North Carolina.
They readily admit what you are probably already thinking. “Nobody else is crazy enough to have tried this,” says Paff, “so were going to set the record regardless of how long it takes us.”
The trip, dubbed the 48stater, began on April 13 in California. Their 7,000-mile roadtrip will eventually land them in Umatilla, Oregon, where they will make their 48th basket.
So what compelled them to try this?
Call is a hoop dream. Paff conceived of the idea shortly after retiring from teaching, when he and his wife, Nancy, began traveling with a Christian service team to San Juan la Laguna, a remote village in Guatemala, to help out with work projects and curriculum development at New Dawn Christian School. Basketball is quickly gaining popuplarity in San Juan, and richard has utilized his 60 years of experience as a player and coach to help students at the school develop their skills and learn about teamwork and perseverance.
The court has been a great addition, but basketball games, schoolwide assemblies, and other outdoor activities often are cancelled due to rain. So Paff decided to raise money for a roof over the court.
He invited John Baker, his brother-in-law, and longtime friend Jack Davis, to join him on the trip and soon plans were in order. The three are paying for the trip out of pocket, ensuring that all donations made go directly to Children of Lake Atitlan, the U.S.-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that aids New Dawn Christian School.
The roof will cost an estimated $27,000. If you are interested in following their journey, visit their official blog at Donations to the school are welcomed too to Children of Lake Atitlan, 9140 Akard Street, Spring Valley, CA 91977. For more information visit

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox